You start with lots of questions. (Why is the heiress so secretive? Who took the candlesticks? What caused the fire in the library?)
Frankly, it’s a bit of mess. So, you call in an expert. Poirot, Marple or Morse. Then, you watch them work out the answers.
Conflicts are resolved, wounds are healed and patterns emerge from chaos. A confession and a solution – all in 60 minutes.
That’s the beauty of TV, isn’t it? The bad stuff always gets fixed.
Sometimes, I think that being a Christian should look the same.
You start with lots of questions. (Why is there suffering? What happens when we die? Does God really exist? What are we here for?)
Frankly, you’re a bit of a mess. So, you call in an expert. A heavenly Maigret. Then, He gives you the answers.
Your conflicts are resolved, your wounds are healed and everything suddenly makes sense. A confession and a solution – all in 60 minutes.
Except it isn’t. And you’re still not fixed.
And that’s when a little voice says:
Maybe He’s not there.
Maybe He is, but He doesn’t care.
Maybe my problems are too big.
Maybe my problems are too small.
Maybe I’m not really a Christian.
When I think like this I’m forgetting two things: truth, and grace.
In real life, happy endings aren’t guaranteed. After the conviction, there’s the paperwork. And behind the headlines, there’s a mountain of small print.
In real life, the camera doesn’t pan away with the sunset.
And in real life, as one story ends, a new one begins. The villain gets out of the police van and goes into the station. The grieving family leave the graveside and go back to work. The detective has a stroke and is quietly retired. The heiress marries the gardener – but he elopes with her butler.
In real life, Christians live between the cross and the resurrection. There’s a happy ending: but the darkness comes first.
In real life, Jesus doesn’t zap us from on high. He joins us in our mess and He works through it.
In real life, I’m not one of the good guys and the law is not on my side.
In real life, justice would finish me off.
BUT the story I’m in is about grace not law.
It’s about the True Detective finding me guilty and then redeeming the whole sorry mess.
That’s what makes it complicated, infuriating, and unpredictable. It’s real – and it’s life.